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More than twenty years ago I worked for ABC News where I was a lowly desk assistant in New York. I worked a variety of shows and desks. But for a period of time I worked on a desk called DEF, which stood for Daily Electronic Feed.

Every day, DEF would cull stories from the affiliates and O & O’s (owned and operated - bigger stations than simply affiliates) throughout the country. And then at the end of the day, there would be the major feed from the network to all those stations with about a dozen stories. That way, a little station in the Midwest could have footage and a voice/over of, say, an explosion at a factory in the south. Or a speech in Boston by someone famous could run on the news in Texas.

For a while, I worked the 4pm to midnight shift. After the main feed, most of the staff would go home and I would be there alone working with a man I’ll call Bob. He was a family man in so much as he had been divorced and had sole custody of a young child right up until he remarried and had a newborn.

As I’d rip wire copy off the machines and label tapes in the lonely newsroom, Bob would regale me with stories of his S & M sex with various women while his kid slept in the next bedroom (before his recent marriage.) He would chuckle a lot and the scars all over his face and neck would outline the bulge in his eyes as he’d wait for my reactions to his prowess.

I was too young to understand that his crude talk was unacceptable and inappropriate. I can’t recall, but if I had to guess, I’d say that I probably blushed and guffawed and tried to move across the room and answer a ringing telephone. I certainly didn’t tell my union boss. I didn’t tell the news director of DEF. I never told my family.

The only thing that interrupted this routine was my nightly delivery of tapes to the main ABC building (we were down the street in a dump of a building) and one other building where I used to see Susan Lucci come out after wrapping up her show each day and fans would fawn all over her.)

It seems I went past Bob’s favorite hamburger stand each night, or at least near it, and he knew that, so he would give me a dollar and tell me to buy him dinner. He never asked. He always told me and assumed I’d do what he said. I recall many a night when I’d be shivering in freezing temperatures waiting for Bob’s hamburger to get wrapped in paper so I could bring it back to his fat self.

Every night I complied without so much as a boo. Until the night I didn’t.

The DEF newsroom was full of producers and editors - the main staff had not yet finished for the day - and Bob was already giving me his marching orders. Only this time, I said that no, I was not going to buy his hamburger. I can’t recall why. I had just had it with his orders. I wanted to come back, get warm and eat my own dinner. I wasn’t around to get Bob’s dinner. And I’d become fed up. It was not in my job description. It was not something I had to do.

What happened next was all so simple. Bob crawled onto the top of a desk across from me, leaned toward me as if to grab me and said the following:

“I ought to fucking kill you.”

Perhaps it was the new baby at home. Perhaps it was the lack of bondage. I don’t know. All I know is that no one, and I do mean NO ONE in that crowded newsroom said a word. Oh, you could hear a pin drop. People sucked wind. People were aghast. But no one said anything either to Bob, or in defense of me.

I walked to another phone, shakily called the main newsroom and said I was going home.

I lived at the time with the mother of a friend on the East Side and she took care of me. When the vice president in charge of desk assistants called a short time later, I told him the entire story. And said I wasn’t coming back.

The next night when I reported for work with this kind VP’s encouragement, I was assigned to the main assignment desk. And when I saw the people who worked in the DEF newsroom pass by, they would not speak to me.

A short while later, two huge union thugs right out of central casting followed me onto the elevator and told me to press charges. Everyone knew this had happened. No one spoke of it, except for the two defensive nose tackles that wanted me to make trouble through the union I was a member of. But what difference would it make? Because abuse by men - and women - had been going on for as long as I had been at the network.

DEF was also the newsroom where a famous science correspondence would kiss me on the cheek any time he walked by me. And the news director there, the son of a very, very famous newsman, would fall out of a nearby bar so fall-down-drunk many nights, it was a miracle he could get home to his family on Long Island.

When I tried to tell my family the story about Bob threatening to kill me because I would not buy his hamburger, they would not listen. They laughed and said that sort of thing simply didn’t happen. Perhaps not in their world, but it happened all the time at the network. Shit happened all the time! It happened with the sports producer who was a cocaine addict and felt that his uncontrollable bursts of rage were acceptable, indeed, delightful for those of us on whom they landed.

It happened with the famous anchorman whose hands were in his pants any and every time I walked into his office.

It happened with the rage-aholic alcoholic, past-her-prime producer who had been jilted by a famous correspondent in London and who took her bra off at the assignment desk every night, through the arms of her pontoon dress (she was very busty) and then who sipped her booze through a flask until she was so hostile drunk she would corner me and hiss incoherently just before the show went live. And it would happen with the nastiest of them all: an obese woman with a full beard who wore Hermes scarves and had no jurisdiction over me at all, yet who used to sidle up to me in her Ferragamo shoes, smirk, and tell me to make a pot of coffee for her (I told her - and this is a direct quote: “I don’t drink it, so I don’t make it.”) She didn’t like me very much.

And then there was one of the founding fathers of Nightline who used to ask me to come into his office, have me sit in a chair across from him, take several calls while staring at me, hang up, then tell me I was free to leave.

ABC News was an abusers paradise in my experience. It was full of amazingly dysfunctional and marginally talented people who truly believed, as the French say, that they farted higher than their own assholes.

Did I learn much about news, about writing it, or how to craft a story? Hell no. I learned about survival (the main receptionist told me to keep my back against the wall every minute I was in the building.) I learned about abuse and how powerful people make sure it’s not noticed. I learned that some of the most famous people you see on TV are some of the dumbest folks you’ll ever meet. I learned that some employees there felt it was their divine right to scream anything at anyone they wanted whenever they wanted. Oh, and I learned how to pad an expense account.

The best advice anyone ever gave me was from Peter Jennings who said that if I wanted to be a reporter I needed to have something to report about. I needed to just go out and do it. And it wasn’t going to happen in that factory of fucked up nut jobs like Bob who were mired in midlife misery and dead end jobs.

So I left and I went west and I became a reporter. And I never looked back. I still have friends from those days. People I care about and liked then and still like now. We had fun, met a lot of famous people, and tore a lot of wire copy.

But I’ll never forget the emotional and verbal abuse that was allowed to go on. Nor will I forget the famous dude from Nightline who called the assignment desk one night and said, “Let’s do it and let’s do it now.”  He thought I was the frustrated divorcee editor who was hoping to fuck her way to the top and who had worn a fur coat and full make up for that evening’s shift for some strange reason. So I put her on the phone and seconds later off she went in the elevator. She returned before her dinner break was up, hair disheveled, lipstick worn off. She never did get promoted. And he had a handful of kids and a wife at home. Yuck. And Yup. Those were the good old days in the news business.


 


Comments

eclecticsandra
11/16/2011 19:35

Laura, you have another book here.

Laura Novak
11/16/2011 19:52

Thanks, ESandra. I really could fill a book with all that happened there!

Ottoline
11/16/2011 20:47

Yup, that's how it was. I wish I could say your account lacks credibility, but it does not, per my own experience.

sleuth
11/16/2011 21:19

I guess I was fortunate in that I only had to deal with two crazy news people in my news career. First was my completely nutzo father (I remember ripping wire stories from the teletype at the radio station when I was a little kid). Second was my last employer who was an alcoholic abuser... he would throw scissors at us and think it was funny, he was constantly touching, stroking, groping. Now I work from home (still in journalism) and am very happy to not have to deal with azzhats.

Sherryn
11/16/2011 21:35

"Yuck and Yup", Something about the simplcity of those words brought back some similar incidents in my first job out of College, and my reaction when I left after a Christmas Party. The news business is very similar to law firms!

I've always admired Peter Jennings, what was he like to work with? (you can choose to ignore that question if my admiration was misplaced.) ;o)

Juneauite
11/16/2011 21:35

What a nightmare. It certainly makes me look at ABC news and Nightline in a new light. Not that I had a favorable opinion before.

mistah charley, ph.d.
11/16/2011 22:07

Laura, sharing these stories must mean that you never want to work in the news biz again. I can see why.

WakeUpAmerica
11/16/2011 22:38

Yes, I definitely think you have another book, and what a useful book that would be, especially for women.

11/17/2011 04:47

Yikes! I agree with Juneauite, what a nightmare. I probably won't be the only one trying to guess the identities of the people that you mentioned. I could see a book/screenplay coming out of your experiences without a doubt.

11/17/2011 04:53

Laura, you had me at " lowly desk assistant". I have similar experiences that inform my views. People who read any of my posts at The Palin Place blogspot are finding that I interpret and analyze. Experience is a great teacher.

Allison
Thepalinplace.blogspot.com

B
11/17/2011 05:18

@Laura. The Way We Were. It wasn't just the news business. Current 20-somethings expect work and life to go their way in a way we never did. At least that makes them less likely to put up if what you/we did.

11/17/2011 05:24

Wow. No wonder the news is so often worthless. I have the feeling that politics is just as bad.

Olivia
11/17/2011 05:49

Great story, told very well, as usual.
Aside from the rich and famous references, I have very much the same experiences from many places I have worked and I would guess a large segment of the population does too. What amazes me is that we can get used to it as normal. You can tell people about it and as you experienced, they laugh or worse, deride you. I had experiences of being molested by strangers as a child and I didn't dare tell my parents. Friends have told me the same thing. It would have been my fault and some thing or some privilege would have been taken away as punishment or I would have been beaten. When I look back, I think the threat of punishment was to keep me from telling so they didn't have to deal with it, not to punish me for being at fault.It was almost like they had to save face. From an early age, I knew I could never trust my parents to protect me.

My children knew that I would kill anyone who harmed them. They laugh about it as adults but they still have no doubt that anyone hurting them would suffer a horrible fate at my hands.

litbrit
11/17/2011 06:25

Superbly written, Laura.

I wish I could say I *couldn't* relate, but I sure can...

I don't know if you ever watched Mad Men, but your post called to mind the very first episode--wherein new secretary Peggy gets to experience the gauntlet of leering men and hear, ad nauseum, the suggestive remarks that were so commonplace and so accepted (and still are, to a degree)--which, itself, reminded me of my early years in the workplace, post-college.

Like you, I was too embarrassed and uncomfortable to say anything. It's easy for people to say, Oh, why didn't you just REPORT it? But what they are missing is that abusers tend to be frightfully skilled at making their victims feel embarrassed, at making us question our own interpretation of events, so we don't say or do anything.

B
11/17/2011 06:39

@Olivia. Punishment is key. We risked losing our jobs. We would show we were not team players. The cards were already stacked against us purely because we were female.

Two pieces of advice I found valuable:
1. Save up 6 months of expenses as F-U money, so that you always have the option of quitting.
2. Look for the male authority who treats you like a daughter rather than a sweetheart. Most men want the best for their daughters, and will mentor them and protect them from harassment.

Viola-Alex
11/17/2011 09:33

Bravo, Laura! Your words (and gutsy passion) put me right there. Maybe your best post ever, imho. "Bob" is more chilling to me than any horror flick guy. And you! You saying, No. Well, my dear, how brave you were/are.

Peter Jennings advice is priceless. He sent you out to live, and you listened.

I was in NYC at a prestigious advertising agency 1976-80 working as a junior copywriter. It was a picnic compared to what you wrote. Right before I left, I was propositioned by the CEO, who offered to install me in my own apartment as his mistress. (Trust me, I was NOT that kind of girl. I was unsexy, bohemian, and quirky) When I told my boss what had happened, he said, "You? No way."

Other than that, it was the happiest working experience of my life. NOTHING like Mad Men. NOTHING like what you wrote. I was surrounded by powerful women, and men who respected them.


Maybe, compared to life with my father, the real world was a piece of cake! :-) Or as B recommends, I had several men who treated me as their daughter, and they protected me.

Or the fact that our ad agency had real leadership (those were the days). It sounds like TV news didn't in your era. That it had, by that time, grown beyond governance. (Who is responsible for the night crew? Who cares, as long as the work gets done.)

Diane
11/17/2011 09:45

An incredible story.
It is amazing how many women have come forth with stories about harassment/abuse they suffered at work.
I have had people threaten me, but I worked on a psychiatric ward at the time.
But, you are right.
Most women did not tell about harassment/abuse in the workplace. There was a lot of it, but there was no protection and you just knew you would lose your job if you made a complaint.

That said, I can't imagine why any woman would vote for Herman Cain. Or Newt-3 wives-and a mistress Gingrich.

GinaM
11/17/2011 09:58

Wow Laura! I want to have lunch with YOU! The stories....oh my the stories!! Okay...let's see...which one of those chicks were Diane Sawyer or Baba Wawa...because those two "ladies" have done a few things in the dark that put them where they are today...no doubt about it!

Conscious at last!
11/17/2011 10:18

Thank you for sharing that Laura. It is yet another chapter in the "Toxic Fame Game."

I'm so glad that you are a survivor- a strong, creative survivor.
I applaud you Laura.

(... and by the way, almost 30 years ago, I, too, was living on W.98th, right there, the day that horrible murder happened.)

11/17/2011 10:38

Laura, I am saden that this is your experinces. I am not surprised and I hope that in this day and age here in America we as women can have better work environments. I have known so many people, mainly woman, but gay men too, who have had these very same kinds of experiences. Most of my own were mirrored from within my family and all around me in the work world. The few time sI stood up for myself everyone around me made me feel like it was me who did something wrong. Yes, people do witness it, they do know it, and yet people still stay very quiet. Thank you for sharing this powerful story with all of us. Malia Litman recently shared her story too. I wish you both would write a book either together or separately about these kinds of encounters. Another group of women who get mistreated in this way are immigrants. Women, we have to start speaking up and being loud. If there is one thing I know for sure, bullies do not like being stood up to, but once confronted they have little power left. There is a story on yahoo today, in which a special needs teenager captured his story on cell phone video. He is my hero. I hope we all learn from him and that we can all give ourselves permission to be treated the right way. Peace. Shay.

11/17/2011 10:55

In my youth, sharing these kinds of stories was called "consciousness raising." I had the great good fortune ("you don't know how lucky you are, boy" - and I didn't, at the time) to spend a year in a mixed-gender (!) but feminist-informed CR group in Cambridge, MA in the very late '60s (i.e., the early 1970s - Nixon's resignation was the end of the '60s in a spiritual sense).

B
11/17/2011 11:02

Screw with us and we multiply.

eclecticsandra
11/17/2011 11:15

I am reminded of the movie, "Nine to Five." That movie was so flawed because of the sex tease aspect of the Dolly Parton character, but I think a lot of women could relate to the movie and enjoyed getting back at the boss.

Viola-Alex
11/17/2011 12:02

@Conscious At Last: What murder? Were you near Pomander Court and the Thalia Theatre? I was at 75th/Amsterdam 30 yrs ago.

Laura Novak
11/17/2011 12:04

I would like to say that this was just the way it was in the 80s, but clearly it was worse earlier and hasn't gone away since, though I think there is more protection in the workplace now.

The VP in charge of us desk assistants truly was protective and paternal. And that made all the difference in my life. If a man was interested in getting into your pants, he wasn't interested in watching your back. It took older mentors for me to grow in my career.

I think we have come a long way, babies. But perhaps not far enough. Thank you all for reading and commenting. I'll bet each and every one of you has an essay of your own on this topic!!

Conscious at last!
11/17/2011 14:16

@ Viola-Alex --

See Laura's bio for the reference.

Ivyfree
11/18/2011 09:15

When I was 18 and in my first year in nursing school, we spent a couple of weeks in the operating room- the school was trying to see if we could get a better handle on asepsis by working in the OR. All I recall is a surgeon- who happened to be the father of my brother's best friend- reached across the operating table, over the anesthetized patient, and felt my breasts. I was 18. I had no clue what to do or say, so I didn't do anything. Neither did any of the other nurses there. I never said anything for years. That was in 1971.

V-A
11/18/2011 10:18

@Ivyfree! Wow. Yes. We really were there for the grabbing, weren't we? My first OBgyn used to do terrible things to me "to relax me." I went to him for several years, because I didn't know it was supposed to be different. Since I told my husband, who manages a number of women, about my past, he has become a mentor of women chefs and a warrior of women's workplace rights. Talking is good.

11/18/2011 12:47

Wow! Thank you for telling it how it was at ABC News. I worked at ABC Evening News as a production secretary and also for one of their children's programs. Along with the "keep your back against the wall" method of avoiding being mauled by a producer or exec producer, the desk assistants and secretaries were expected to pick up the dry cleaning of the execs. I protested; the exec producer of Evening News supported me in the form of a memo. Except for one goodie-two-shoes who insisted she didn't mind, the dry cleaning "errands" stopped but it's also true that was the first year that I didn't get a raise. I'd forgotten what a bunch of insensitive jerks most of the ABC execs and "star" anchors and correspondents were. Your post has made me wonder why, as a writer, I've stayed quiet about those years. I had a different last name then -- and you can't be sued when you tell the truth. It seems I simply lacked your courage.

Laura Novak
11/18/2011 13:15

Barbara, Thank you for sharing your own story of your time at ABC News. It sounds like you were brave indeed to insist upon not picking up dry cleaning for someone. And I don't think you lack courage; it's never to late to begin writing about what you remember from the "Roone days."

And Ivyfree, my goodness, imagine a surgeon doing that. In front of other people no less. What a pig. What a God complex. What is it about a scalpel that empowers some men? I am grateful that my son's surgeon was as humble and soft spoken and gentlemanly as he was/is. I could not have tolerated a cowboy in that kind of relationship.

And V-A, what indignity to have suffered at the hands of a man who you were trusting. I recall a doctor friend saying that there was only one reason why men went into that profession. I'm sure it was an exageration, but it sounds like it was an easy way out (in?) for some sleaze bags. I'm sorry that you both suffered such indignity.

Young girls today cannot fathom what we went through to get to where people don't mess with us any longer. But jerks really know who to prey on, don't they? Thank you ALL for sharing!!

curiouser
11/18/2011 14:24

Laura, I've been waiting and waiting for the words that would allow me to adequately express my appreciation for the post and to participate in the discussion. It's simply not happenin'. Please know that I appreciate the post, you, and your blog community a bunch.

Sherryn
11/18/2011 22:06

I don't know if anyone has been watching "Pan Am", but it relates so well to this post. The stewardesses were "groomed" to cater to men's lesser instincts. It was expected and part of the culture, the ladies felt that getting to see the world made up for the crap they put up with.
Today, women can see the world on their own terms, and each person's experience on this blog is proof the evolution of the women's movement, along with education has given women more power, but we still have far to go.

Curiouser, I often visit and read the entries and posts and come away feeling the same way. Laura's writing and choice of topic sometimes leave me waiting for the right time to thank her. I always come away learning something I didn't know, or realizing a universal connection from shared life experiences. It's powerful and cathartic.
I appreciate Laura and her blog community, Thank You all for your contributions!

Kipperandbob
11/19/2011 03:01

What can you expect from a country where the most powrful get away with the darkest of deeds I can guarantee that Mike Bloomberg received marching orders from DC to quash the OWS movement "right this second". Our beef is not with banks or Wall Street. It is with the lawmakers who give them power. We need to collectively realize this.

Olivia
11/19/2011 06:16

Kipperandbob, I think it is banks and Wall Street who empower the lawmakers corruption. Money flows for favors. They work together to get away with the darkest of deeds. You cannot blame one and not the other.

B
11/19/2011 07:07

@Laura, Lisa K Fry is probably a troll (she hits on the same McG & Obama points), but she is definitely offensive. If this were my blog, I'd remove "her" comment.

11/19/2011 08:54

I agree that Lisa K Fry has the usual Palinbot characteristics: averring that something is false but without giving specifics. And really, claiming that Sarah would not sue? Of course she would sue, if she could sue (and this is turning into a tongue-twister).

Laura Novak
11/19/2011 08:59

Yes, I deleted it. I can't stand filthy language like that. And who cares about SP now? I nearly forgot her name till this person mentioned it again.

Thank you for your sweet comments about my blog, Sherryn and Curiouser. I really appreciate it. And I feel that it's the people like you who come here that make it what it is. So, thank you for making my day!

11/19/2011 09:52

Here's a short review/essay by David Foster Wallace concerning misogynists, phallocrats, solipsists and the fiction of John Updike/'Toward the End of Time' Here's a bit:

--Maybe the only thing the reader ends up appreciating about Ben Turnbull
is that he's such a broad caricature of an Updike protagonist that he
helps us figure out what's been so unpleasant and frustrating about this
gifted author's recent characters. It's not that Turnbull is stupid -- he
can quote Kierkegaard and Pascal on angst and allude to the deaths of
Schubert and Mozart and distinguish between a sinistrorse and a
dextrorse Polygonum vine, etc. It's that he persists in the bizarre
adolescent idea that getting to have sex with whomever one wants
whenever one wants is a cure for ontological despair. And so, it
appears, does Mr. Updike -- he makes it plain that he views the narrator's
impotence as catastrophic, as the ultimate symbol of death itself, and
he clearly wants us to mourn it as much as Turnbull does. I'm not
especially offended by this attitude; I mostly just don't get it. Erect
or flaccid, Ben Turnbull's unhappiness is obvious right from the book's
first page. But it never once occurs to him that the reason he's so
unhappy is that he's an asshole.--

All of it here (please note the asterisk next to DFW's description of Updike, Roth and Mailer as the Great Male Narcissists. He qualifies that distinction with "* Unless, of course, you consider constructing long encomiums to a
woman's "sacred several-lipped gateway" or saying things like "It is
true, the sight of her plump lips obediently distended around my swollen
member, her eyelids lowered demurely, afflicts me with a religious
peace" to be the same as loving her.



http://www.badgerinternet.com/~bobkat/observer1.html

I'm a big fan of Updike's, especially his 'Rabbit novels'. I admit that what I've most enjoyed is his realitic male voice. Rabbit's inner dialogue sounded so much like my own and, likely, most men I knew (in the 60s, 70s and 80s). There's my admission. Updike was a generation older than me. I evolved as a man in the 60s and 70s. Then the male/female zeitgeist was in flux, moving forward I as it should have and did. Nonetheless, Updike's words, through Rabbit, made me chuckle often because I recognized the truth in them. Not true truth, mind you, but truth as Updike depicted it through Rabbit.

I definitely am not a phallocrat nor a mysogynist. Absolutely I have qualities of a solipsist, but who doesn't. DFW talks about our solipsistic nature in his commencement speech at Kenyon College saying that each of us is certain that we are the center of the universe.

So I can't say that I haven't acted inappropriately at times. I unhappily admit that. Yet I'm reluctant to blame the culture of the time. I should have known better and probably did. I didn't do anything terribly bad I don't think. Nothing like the behavior described by Laura. I was just an asshole (at the time and of course I thought I was right and it was okay--then). How about you (pl.), you ever been just an asshole?

lilly lily
11/19/2011 11:43

Interesting.

Things never change.

Even the net is filled with predators. I was in a blog for a short time where the men behave like this big time. Usually alkies, and when drunk... wow.

One millionaire Wall Street drunk, quiet brilliant (and he was a millionaire and on Wall Street) offered to shoot me when I crossed him. Called me a tin plated cunt. (He also calls men cunts.) LOL.

I left in disgust, though in many ways it was one of the funniest places I have ever posted. (I had wanted to toughen myself up for the internet, and I learned a lot.) Some of the women there loved the raving drunk. One called him Dad. He is always ordering women around to do things for him. And if he does something for someone he never lets them forget. His wife kicked him out of his house at one point, and he grovelled his way back in.

While I don't post there, or look into the more private area, they still post their disgusting drunken rants and no one says boo. I look in now and then because I am fond of one of the women.

She is now in an mildly S M relationship. She is a talented writer, but gets into crazy life situations. Good to write about. A very fine writer.

Another jerk is a drunk in Bermuda who rants and insults a few of the women non stop. He is three sheets to the wind most of the time. Horrible person.

The women accept it. They grouse but no one stops him, or bans him.

They take it. Even on the internet women take it.

One jerk wrote about his torrid sex life with $500 hookers. And that he liked 15 year olds. One idiot nurse wanted to marry him. Had sex with him, grovelled for him to marry her.

He tried to interest me, A lawyer ready to retire. I lol and told him there were plenty of fish in the sea, and I was exactly the opposite of what he wanted in a woman. So he went on to another desperate female who angled for his attention but teased for months before he died in an accident.

Some of them miss him.

Some women will put up with anything.

I don't happen to be one of them, and while I'm ancient, I get hit on regularly in real life because the guys still think I'm hot.

I'm not.

The desperate to marry again nurse married another abusive male and after a year of trouble, he left her for a blouzy blond after spending much of her money.

Some women are victims naturally, even if they put up a tough front.

It is a lot easier to deal with on paper than in real life.

I've had my share of bastardly jerks, but I never took it. If nothing else, a stilleto heel crunching down on toes.

I no longer wear stilleto heels, but men don't presume as much when you are older.

Europeans are even worse.

lilly lily
11/19/2011 11:55

Knew men on the top in the news. NBC. So I got a different perspective.

Also went to a few parties in Radioland.

Nasty as all get out men. Women are nothing. But they are nasty to each other also.

Very mean.

Laura Novak
11/19/2011 14:35

Thanks again to all for sharing their own stories here.I know it was a lot worse for a lot longer than what we "suffered" in the 80s. And there certainly is a culture that prevails in "high stakes" industries, whether fame or money is involved.

I don't know Tom, I think there was more at play here than men just being jerks. I think there was an institutional form of bullying that was allowed to go on. But thank you for the literary references, which we can always count on from you. I knew a guy who also loved Rabbit - the character spoke to him. I've not read it myself but thank you for sharing it here.

lilly lily
11/20/2011 11:12

Funny, The one man who was pre-ccupied with sex constantly and who died a gruesome death? I haven't re created my avatar at that site, but in checking his on site identity, from an earlier site the owner states he owned what people wrote in his blog and he was going to publish the graphic sex writings.

This man gave me and other women his telephone number, his name, his address, his lawyers number etc. I think he of all people would love being postumously published. Especially his sex life.

I never read his personal life porn as it isn't my thing, but his weather analysis and climate change data was spot on, (he had been in the Navy), and his essays on Bonobo's and Carl Jung and Women were very literary, though very repetative. Same thing over and over.

There were some brilliant if very tiresome men there after they were kicked off of blog after blog. And some very, very funny men.

It was enlightening. Don't people own what they write? Does a blog owner take the rights of publishing work printed in their blog by others?

The female writer has her blog which she is self publishing story by story on Amazon. At one point someone else tried to claim they were the author of all her stories. I don't know who it was, but someone came across them and told the woman. She had written the stories in a trial run in that .com...

She was approached to have her stories filmed by an English production co., but was leery. I told her to get a good lawyer to protect herself. She isn't very swift about protecting herself in her personal life or writing.

A born victim though not a simple soul, simply not equipped with claws.

Plaguerism? Or do you actually lose your rights when writing in a blog?

lilly lily
11/20/2011 11:15

Sorry they were.com sites not blog sites.

Don't know if that makes a difference.

lilly lily
11/20/2011 12:23

What consitutes plagiarism when someone is posting stories on someone elses.com site, and the stories are used by someone other than the author.

Does an site owner own everything written in his site?

Anyone know?

Right now watching all the OWS links.

They are serenading Mayor Bloomberg non stop with drums. LOL. He is going to love it, probably move to a hotel for the duration.

Yesterday the Walk of Shame for the female Chancellor of Davis.

Demands that she be removed.

In my mind the germs of protest were started on campus when Sarah Palin was speaking at a California University. Any protesting students were kept at a distance after some students salvaged the questionable documents and those students were scapegoated as theives when they had liberated documents tossed aside, on what the contracts were in Palin's speaking venue there.

Then it went on to Wisconsin. The 1% trying to impose their will on the 99%, who stood up and said NO.

Students have found their voices. And passive resistance.

I'm shocked by the use of pepper spray on the passive students.

11/23/2011 20:45

This is terrible Laura, I am glad you survived and didn't fall in the trap of living these half-lives. Many people appear to be getting along but the truth is that they mostly hang by a thread and are on a path of a long slow decline. It's sad, but I wonder if this has improved nowadays? At least at my job I don't see these crazy things. Or is it maybe the nature of the news profession?


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